This is a 4-day itinerary for a trip to the Galapagos Islands. The trip includes a visit to five different islands, where you can see a variety of wildlife, including sea lions, lava lizards, penguins, reef sharks, turtles, rays, seabirds, fur seals, and sharks. You will also snorkel in two different bays, where you can see even more marine life. In addition to the wildlife, you will also visit the Interpretation Center, a museum about the history of human presence in the Galapagos. This is a unique and unforgettable trip that will allow you to experience the natural beauty and diversity of the Galapagos Islands.
AM: Baltra Airport
Departure to the Galapagos Islands, arrival at Baltra airport, where our naturalist guide of the National Park will be waiting for you.
Mosquera is mostly a barren sand bar with some rocky areas and scattered salt-resistant plants. You can walk along the beach and enjoy seeing playful sea lion pups surfing the waves and having a great time in the tide pools. Look for endemic lava gulls which are often seen flying over the beach in the search of food.
Snorkel: If the waves are not too big you can snorkel at the northern tip of the island or at one of the small beaches in the sheltered side.
AM: Sullivan Bay
This hike is a journey into understanding the birth of these volcanic islands. You will walk in a very well preserved flow of Pahoehoe lava, which will give you endless opportunities to see the delicate textures of these type of lavas which only appear in a few places throughout the world. At first sight the barren landscape looks completely deprived of life, but look carefully for pioneer plants, lava lizards and small birds. By the shore, you can find penguins, pelicans and oystercatchers.
Snorkel: You will have the option to swim or snorkel from a coral sand beach or from the dinghies. Getting underwater is like traveling to another world: if the land is almost lifeless, the sea is teaming with life, including large schools of fish, Galapagos penguins, reef sharks, turtles and rays.
Bartolome is one of the most iconic places in the Galapagos and one of the few where you can see penguins without going to the remote areas of western Isabela and Fernandina. You will get great views of Pinnacle Rock, located in the northern side of the island, right next to a beautiful peach-color sand beach.
The hike to the top of the island is fantastic and will offer you incredible views of lunar landscapes with scattered volcanic cones. Many islands are visible from this outlook, as well as the bay of Sullivan and the Pinnacle rock.
Snorkel: You will have the option to swim or snorkel from the beach. This area holds a well-deserved reputation of being one of the best snorkeling places in the Galapagos, not only because it’s clear and calm water, but also because of the presence of penguins, which are relatively easy to find while snorkeling, along with an incredible diversity of fish, colorful invertebrates, sea lions, turtles, rays and reef sharks.
AM: El Barranco
El Barranco is located in the southern part of Darwin Bay at Genovesa Island. The cliffs face the sea are made of very fragile fractured lava, making it the ideal place for storm petrel to build their colonies, which attracts an important population of short-eared owls preying of the nesting birds. Red footed and Nazca boobies are abundant along the trail. At the base of the cliffs you can see Galapagos fur seals resting in shaded areas, as well as several species of seabirds.
Snorkel: You can snorkel along the cliffs where there are many fish and great chances of seeing sharks, rays and sea lions.
PM: Darwin Bay
Genovesa is a favorite island for birdwatchers as it is home for very large colonies of seabirds. From the minute you set foot at the beach you will be amazed by the noise of hundreds of boobies, gulls and frigatebirds flying over your heads, perched in the bushes or nesting on the sandy terrain. The trail is an ultimate wildlife experience as there are animals everywhere; sea lions and marine iguanas near the sea; night herons, lava & swallow tailed gulls, Darwin finches, Galapagos doves, mockingbirds and many more species inland.
Snorkel: The bay offers several places to snorkel; from deep waters along the cliffs across the bay, to shallow waters by the beach. In either case, there are many fish to see and great chances of seeing sharks, rays and sea lions.
AM: Interpretation Center
Located in the outskirts of Puerto Baquerizo, this center is dedicated to the history of human presence in the Galapagos. Since the times of the early Spanish explorers to the present times, including illustrious visitors such as Charles Darwin, this permanent exhibition will take you through the dangers and struggles of the first settlers trying to survive the harsh Galapagos environment.
Then, transfer to the airport to take your flight back to continental Ecuador.